I have been to festivals big and small all over the world. I travel a lot and have had the privilege to see many acts in many different destinations. This was my first time, however visiting Electric Island in my home city of Toronto. It was a cloudy morning, but as I got closer to the docks for the ferry over to the island the sun come out as if the Techno Gods were shining down on us this Canada Day.
I got to the island just in time to see NYC groovy house master, Dennis Ferrer, ripping the crowd with his beats that’ll make the most apprehensive party goer move their feet. The island was starting to fill up and the sea of tech house lovers carrying Canadian flags, dressed in red and white were getting ready for an epic Canada Day celebration – things were about to get equal parts weird and awesome. Ferrer was nothing shy of great, warming up the crowd properly for Lee Foss, as some of the party goers stood wishing he had more time on stage. We knew we had a stacked line-up in store for us, so there was no room to complain about the length of the Ferrer’s set.
Lee Foss took the stage late afternoon and played some chopped up Beyoncé vocals over a dope beat right away. The crowd was dancing and in a groovy house mood after Ferrer as Foss started to turn it up. We hit another gear. The island started getting busier and love was in the air. Foss continued to play bangers and everyone was dancing, people were on picnic tables, on top of beer trucks, and on shoulders. As I took some time to look around I quickly remembered why Toronto’s house scene is second to none, we are all about great music in this city and Lee Foss set us up for a legend as he closed out with a wicked remix of his track “Reverse SkyDiving” with Anabel England.
One of my favorite party memories is from 1999 where I had the pleasure of seeing Sasha and John Digweed perform some magic at the old but majestic Meow night club. From that night on I was a huge fan and would go on to see the duo perform all over the world. Also in the mid 2000’s I was fortunate enough to see Sasha bring up the sun on Torontos Famous Skybar which was part of the Guvernment Nightclub which closed earlier this year. This Canada Day would be different though Sasha took the stage with an energized crowd pumped up by Foss magic. The sun was setting behind us over the lake and the beautiful Toronto skyline reveled itself as
The sun was now down, the light show was in full effect and Marcel Dettman came on to an energized crowd that was left wanting more. He did not disappoint as he brought his banging, German techno sound to the stage that is infamous from his residency at Berghain. Marcel’s DJ sets are as gritty, crunchy and funky as his productions are. They truly represent the undertone of the Berlin vibe, and that’s exactly what he brought to the island with him this past Wednesday. Dettmann’s set packed incredible sonic variety and emotional nuance, and truly brought the pain as he played one hard-hitting track after another while he waved the Canadian Flag high above and watched the amazing light show in front of us.
Electric Island did not disappoint at all. The line up, organizers, and stage set up were all perfect. The one thing that makes Toronto original, though, and why DJs and music lovers love this city is because of the crowd. The people of this great city know how to have a good time and show real love to everyone around them!
Oh Canada…. We sang it on the Ferry back. It was more than I expected and I can’t wait for the next instalment of Electric Island.
FestPop Staff Writer